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After a gang of seven teenagers, led by Cholly and Eddy, create a disturbance in a bar when they are refused service for being underage, they head for a drive-in theater. Meanwhile, college-bound Scotty White goes to pick up his sixteen-year-old girl friend, Janice Wilson, for a date at the same drive-in. However, when Scotty arrives at the Wilson house, Janice's parents, who have decided that she is too young to go steady, forbid Scotty to see her for six months. Scotty then goes to the drive-in alone and becomes innocently involved in an altercation between the gang and two other patrons. The gang comes to Scotty's rescue and, unaware that they initiated the incident, he is grateful to them. After Scotty explains the situation with Janice to Cholly, mentioning that her parents want her to date other boys, Cholly offers to front for him and bring Janice to him. Somewhat reluctantly, Scotty agrees to have Cholly pick up Janice the following evening. The next morning, Scotty's younger sister, Sissy, takes a message to Janice asking her to meet him in a park. After Scotty reassures her that he will try to reason with her father in a week or so, he tells her about the arrangement with Cholly. Janice is uncertain whether her parents will approve of Cholly, but agrees to try Scotty's plan. That evening, Cholly manages to convince Janice's parents that he is a suitable date and brings her to Scotty. The other gang members, including the psychotic Eddy, who is antagonistic toward Scotty, intend to break into a remote, unoccupied house and have a party. Cholly insists that Scotty and Janice join them and, although Janice is suspicious and afraid of Cholly, she and Scotty reluctantly agree to go along. At the party, whiskey is passed around and while Scotty's attention is diverted, Janice is forced to dance with Cholly and then Eddy, both of whom behave suggestively toward her. Janice runs from the house and Scotty takes her home. Later, after the police raid the party and the gang members' parents have to put up bail for their teenagers, Eddy convinces Cholly that Scotty informed the police about the party. The next day, Cholly and the gang pick up Scotty and, although he protests that he had nothing to do with their being arrested, take him to a gang member's house and force him to drink several glasses of whiskey until he passes out. The gang then puts Scotty in their car and when they stop for gas, Eddy talks Cholly into letting him rob the station's cash register. When Scotty says he is going to be sick, the others let him out of the car and he collides with the escaping Eddy and ends up with the stolen cash. Cholly slugs the station attendant with the pump nozzle and they drive off, leaving the injured attendant and Scotty behind. Later, worried that Cholly may have killed the attendant, Eddy tries to persuade Cholly to return to the station to kill Scotty because he can identify them all. Deciding to kidnap Janice to ensure Scotty's silence, Cholly phones her to tell her that Scotty has been hurt and arranges to pick her up. Cholly then takes Janice to a gang member's house and assaults her when she tries to escape. Meanwhile, Scotty has sobered up and takes a taxi home where Eddy approaches him on the street, demanding the money from the robbery. Scotty gives Eddy the cash and tells him to advise Cholly that he will say nothing about the robbery as long as the gang stays away from him. After Eddy tells him that the gang has kidnapped Janice, Scotty grabs him and strangles him until he reveals where they are holding her. While Scotty races to the house where Janice is being held captive, his parents call the police. When Scotty arrives, he finds Cholly attempting to molest Janice. Cholly backs off, allowing Scotty to comfort Janice, but as the couple is about to leave, Cholly suddenly lunges at Scotty with a switchblade knife, wounding him in the stomach. Although wounded, Scotty is able to defend himself and severely beats Cholly as police car sirens wail in the distance. At police headquarters, the Whites and the Wilsons reclaim their children.